Thursday, January 29, 2009

PA Turnpike Series #2

I'm working, albeit slowly on account of my web site, on the second and third in a Pennsylvania landscape series. I have been really looking forward to doing some rural landscapes. In Virginia, when I lived there, I always wanted to, yet never did. So when I moved to PA, I was equally as anticipatory regarding the notion of farmland and undeveloped country and quite desirous of romanticizing and appreciating it.

A professor said that the brain activity of an artist responding to visual stimuli is the same as another's under the influence of the drug mescaline. When I paint a sky, and visually translate it, a person may love some detail or exaggeration of it. I would hope that it may add to their enjoyment of a glance at it during some frustrating moment, that they might see it in the sky before them then.

I'm not sure why farmland. I've always been drawn to the Hudson River School, and the Impressionists. I think that before all the incendiary wars(WWI, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Middle East I&II, Kosovo, South American, Terror, non-American, etc....), artists were working to some common goal, I suspect. I hope. This goal involved tradition, technique and discipline. Beginning with cooperative, then individual, photographic(reflective), then sensory interpretive, it resulted in the combination of studio techniques with on location sketching. The wars brought psycho-interpretive, angst-reflective, decontructivist, itellectualizational rending and spiritual burning and killing of all things valued. Before then a building process was taking place where technical methods were being developed and applied to painting. Specifically, the interpretation was becoming quite sophisticated. In a way the ancient Chinese Literati had developed Eastern Style to a certain refined point, so too the Western Style was being developed- and developing, influenced by the Eastern Style at this time I refer to: just prior to the turn of the century: circa. 1850's.

The Arts and Crafts movement failed to combine quality with production. Technology produced photography (which I use to capture scenes as the Impressionist's mind would, in unison with the brush, @ that instant). Before photography, the studio artist brought the moment captured (the Impressionist's finished product) back to the studio but only had labor to confuse the time between completion and initial memory.

I think I am seeing some lost tradition which I must recapture, and sure it hasn't been. The tradition uses the technology to remember; to remember both a moment, but also to keep it present while it is translated; and to remember what we (as artists throughout time) were attempting to do, at any point in the process, at any point in history. I'm not sure what it is but I have identified a moment in stylistic methodology just before all the burning and exploding... just before the popcorn began popping. A moment to pick up where we left off, if we haven't been truly deafened and distracted for good. There was a discipline and foundation here somewhere... Academic, Impressionistic.... The virtuosity and finesse that translates for all mankind the look of what we are, how we see, and the way that looks on record.

I for one believe, and will continue to translate, if only for me. I will produce these odd attempts through process, which to the untrained eye, for all the world, are bits of colored grease... smeared on cloth.

The point of all that rant, was that the technique I am using in these next little landscapes, so far, is an academic foundation of a thin layer of burnt sienna, reddish-brown. Then, atop this I painted a more impressionistic description of the tree-line and mountains. Of course the brush is used to 'draw' in the adaptation of the Eastern Style, although it isn't really drawing in the strict sense of extended point delineation. The interesting thing is that I'm employing a glazing technique, thin layers of blue that are really deepening the perspective. It's a studio technique combined with an impressionistic technique in a way that has really stirred up this previous suspicion of recapturing this development in the artistic process and breaking free from this incredibly irritating and confusing, nay debilitating, purposeless, lack of resolution in the Modern Arts free fall.

I think this 'Impressionism' was an absorption of the Eastern Style. Impressionists, loosely used at this point, began incorporating abstraction and abstract methods increasingly before the wars. Academics had long embraced abstract methods to support the development of their photo-reflective goals. But here, the Eastern Style methods were understood, and appreciated as philosophies that were incorporated purposefully, as recognised adaptations and imitations of Eastern Style that were also purposefully conjoined to Academic European fine artisan decorative paneling traditions.

Eastern Style developed and combined with Academic traditions to become Western Style and has been developing as a unified World Style un-recognised for some time due to the confusing mis-inclusion of primitive warlike styles by confused mis-directed war-torn, traumatized, demented war-generations.

In, short, these next in this PA Turnpike Series are coming along well.

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